Islamabad: A visiting senior UN official on Monday urged Pakistan to consider the possibility of sending women police personnel to take part in the world body’s peacekeeping missions.

Herve Ladsous, UN Under-Secretary-General, Department of Peacekeeping Operations, made the request during a meeting with Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan.

According to an official handout, the minister said that at present, Pakistan was having problems at home, thus adding that it would not be possible to spare personnel for UN assignments.

He, however, added that the policy would be looked at and revised as soon once the situation improved. The minister said that the presence of military and civil armed forces at UN peacekeeping missions would be maintained at previous levels.

Ladsous lauded Pakistan’s long and solid contribution to the UN peacekeeping around the globe. The UN official said that more than 150,000 Pakistani military and police personnel have served in UN peacekeeping assignments during the last five decades.

Nisar Khan said the experience gained by Pakistani personnel by working in the UN had allowed them to better handle diverse and difficult conflicts and post-conflict situations after coming back to the country.

The minister underlined that Pakistan’s long standing commitment to UN peacekeeping “is part of our foreign policy as we consider multilateralism and the United Nations as the best means of addressing the challenges of today.”

He said Pakistan is currently the top contributor of military and police to UN peacekeeping missions with more than 8,000 personnel deployed in seven missions.

As a leading troop contributor, Pakistan has a significant stake in the success of UN Peacekeeping, Nisar Khan said.